Solomon Islands Government loses more MPs
HONIARA, 30 OCTOBER 2017 (SOLOMON STAR) — Eleven more Solomon Islands government ministers and backbenchers have walked out from the Sogavare-led Democratic Coalition for Change Government (DCCG) and have joined the Honiara Hotel Camp Sunday night to form a new government. [restrict]
The Honiara Hotel camp last night claimed it had 29 members.
On Sunday two more ministers and nine backbenchers resigned which appeared to have further dwindled DCCG’s numerical strength. This brings to a total of 18 Members of Parliament who deserted Sogavare since Saturday.
The two ministers who gave up their portfolios Sunday were; Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening Minister David Tome and the Minister of Peace, National Unity and Reconciliation Samson Maneka.
While the nine backbenchers who have resigned in writing to the Prime Minister includes; Samuel Iduri, Dickson Mua, Alfred Ghiro, Lionel Alex Qora, Charles Sigoto, Jimmy Lusibaea, Namson Tran, David Day Pacha and Martin Kealoe.
On Saturday, seven ministers tendered their resignation. They included the; Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Home Affairs Manasseh Maelanga, Minister of National Development Planning and Aid Coordination Danny Philip, Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources Snyder Rini, Minister of Police, National Security and Correctional Services Moses Garu, Minister of Public Service John Moffat Fugui, Minister of Forestry and Research Chris Laore and Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Elijah Doromuala.
Deputy Private Secretary to the Governor General Rawcliffe Ziza confirmed to the Solomon Star that the Government House has received the resignation letters of Tome and Maneka.
“Governor General Sir Frank Kabui has accepted their resignation.”
Ziza said Sir Frank will respond to all the nine Cabinet Ministers who resigned over the weekend by today.
Since the resignation of the 18 ministers and backbenchers on Saturday and Sunday, they have teamed up with the Opposition and Independent Group at Honiara Hotel last night to show their solidarity ahead of the proposed motion of no confidence scheduled for this week.
A visit by the paper last night to Honiara Hotel saw only 26 Members of Parliament were in camp at the Honiara Hotel last night.
The other three missing MPs are; Fugui who is currently overseas, Muala on sick leave, and Mua who is attending to family commitments.
Meanwhile, the Solomon Star was reliably informed that an urgent Caucus meeting was called for Sunday in an effort to consolidate DCCG’s strength. The meeting however failed to proceed due to lack of quorum, it was revealed.
When the Solomon Star contacted the deputy Press Secretary to the Prime Minister Alex Akwai to confirm the report, he said, he would need to check with his superiors and asked the inquiring reporter to call back a few minutes later. When the reporter called back, his mobile was switched off.
Mobile and landline calls to the Special Secretary to the Prime Minister John Muria Sunday went unanswered.
But a government issued statement last night said, the government is intact despite the walkout of the nine ministers.
In a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet the Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare stated;
“Some of these resignations come as no surprise based on the fact that some of these same Ministers were responsible for undermining the progress of the ACB and the Opposition and Independent Parliamentary Groups have inadvertently aligned themselves with this agenda.”
The statement also added that the Anti Corruption Bill (ACB) has been tabled in Parliament and is scheduled for Parliament this week.
The Prime Minister is confident and assured the nation that the DCCG will deliver on its promise.
“The DCC Government will not allow petty politics to hinder the delivery of the Anti-Corruption Bill. This is what the people want and DCCG will deliver the Anti-Corruption Bill, PM Sogavare stated.
The Government is fully committed to ensure its policies are delivered and move forward in the national interest..pacnews [/restrict]